Saint Brigid Religious Education
100 Mayflower Street
West Hartford, CT 06110
day: June 11
All we know
of Barnabas is to be found in the New Testament. He was a Jew, born in
Cyprus and named Joseph. He sold his property, gave the proceeds to the
Apostles, who gave him the name Barnabas, and lived in common with the
earliest converts to Christianity in Jerusalem.
He comes as
close as anyone outside the Twelve to being a full-fledged apostle. He
persuaded the community there to accept Paul as a disciple, was sent to
Antioch, Syria, to look into the community there, and brought Paul there
he brought Antioch's donation to the Jerusalem community during a
famine, and returned to Antioch with John Mark, his cousin. The three
went on a missionary journey to Cyprus, and Antioch where they were so
violently opposed by the Jews that they decided to preach to the pagans.
Then they went on to Lycaonia, where they were first acclaimed gods and
then stoned out of the city, and then returned to Antioch in Syria.
dispute arose regarding the observance of the Jewish rites, Paul and
Barnabas went to Jerusalem, where, at a council, it was decided that
pagans did not have to be circumcised to be baptized. On their return to
Antioch, Barnabas wanted to take John Mark on another visitation to the
cities where they had preached, but Paul objected because of John Mark's
desertion of them in Perga. Paul and Barnabas parted, and Barnabas
returned to Cyprus with Mark. Nothing further is heard of him, though
it is believed his rift with Paul was ultimately healed.
has Barnabas preaching in Alexandria and Rome, the founder of the
Cypriote Church, the Bishop of Milan, and has him stoned to death at
Salamis about the year 61.